Here’s what just arrived: the latest evolution of iVolution, Vaja’s series of high-end leather case designs for iPods, iPhones, and MacBooks. The $340 iVolution Shell for MacBook, also called the iVolution Snap Shell in its MacBook Air version, is a deluxe leather-wrapped hardshell.
The design is based on the prior iVolution Leather Suit series, but with a few significant changes. First, it now uses a few thin magnets rather than a wrap-around zipper to keep itself closed.
According to Vaja, the magnets have been tested for safety with the MacBooks, so hard drive corruption shouldn’t be an issue. Second, the outer stripe found on the earlier cases has disappeared, and third, the inside of the case no longer features an X-styled, second-colored design element. Consequently, the outside is one color, the inside is a second color, and that’s it.
As always, users get to choose those colors.
Sixteen colors are offered for the outside Floater leather, a grainy version previously featured in the company’s special edition iPhone cases, and 41 colors for the inner Caterina leather, which ranges from Vaja logo embossed on the mostly obscured bottom half to flat, padded, and/or dotted on the top half.
Though it adds quite a bit of thickness to the new MacBook, it also adds such tangible class that we could understand why users looking for a stylish, deluxe hardshell would consider ponying up the asking price. Assuming that Vaja’s correct about the safety of the magnets, the switch from a zipper is a positive for both usability and looks; it has yielded nicer-looking outside edges that let the inner color peek through, and made opening the case a lot easier than the prior Leather Suits. We’ll be updating this piece with additional details as we have a chance to use the new iVolution Shell over the next week or so.